AC [Direct] I and II presents “The Importance of Good Conduct,” by Taiwanese artist Hong-Kai Wang. In her cross-disciplinary sound and audiovisual pieces, Symphony and The Broken Orchestra, Wang investigates cultural and political conformity, deconstructing the influences
of social norms on the individual.
Through a re-contextualization of common sounds and spaces, Wang challenges convention and accepted behaviors. Often collaborating with visual artists, theater directors, music composers, filmmakersand choreographers, her work reveals unexpected expressions and meanings within the overlap of aesthetics and quotidian life. Filled with poignant ironies and an experimental “purposeful play” reminiscent
of John Cage, Wang resists the prescribed confines of any situation or medium.
In AC [Direct] I, the audiovisual piece Symphony juxtaposes the constructs
of individuality and nationality through Wang’s encounter with the Immigration Naturalization Service in Garden City, Long
Island. Her mechanical interrogation is heard simultaneously over
Debussy’s melodic piece, Clair de Lune, led by an anonymous
conductor in silhouette. In a clash of orchestrated forced and free will, harmony and acceptance become incompatible, dissonant forces.
Located in the front of AC [Direct] II and played from a 5.1 sound system (including benches for the audience) is Wang’s The Broken Orchestra, which explores the boundaries of conventional uniformity and euphony within music’s standard complement. For this work, nine musicians separately recreated an early childhood performance of Bach’s Ave Maria by Wang and her brother. Isolated from the ensemble
and responding to the naiveté of an imperfect and distorted instrumentation, the musicians’ sensibilities were open to personal associations and idiosyncrasies. The results of their interpretations are remixed into the original recording in an eternal loop of creative chance and circumstance.
Born in Taiwan and now living and working in New York.